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Sensory Scientist - Downers Grove, Illinois - Food Science Consu



Job Overview 


Sara Lee

Required Education:

Not Specified

Job Type:

QA - Quality Control

Required Experience:

Not Specified

Base Pay:


Required Travel:

Up to 25%

Other Pay:


Description: map it!US-IL-Chicago

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Employee Type:


Manages Others:

Not Specified

Relocation Covered:

Not Specified


Consumer Products

Reference ID:


Job Description 

Position Summary:
This position provides Sensory Research and Guidance leadership for all Sara Lee Retail and Foodservice Businesses through extensive knowledge of  all functions of the sensory program (descriptive, discrimination, shelf life, and consumer guidance) and highly proficient food science understanding of both frozen and refrigerated bakery and meat goods.  Primarily functions autonomously and provides training, mentoring and development of subordinate sensory staff positions.  Is recognized by ISP and R&D as a critical sensory resource and is sought out for recommendations about how sensory insights will impact a business decision.  
Essential Duties & Responsibilities:
Strategic Business Partner/Functional Lead:  Serves as respected sensory  resource for all portfolio activities (innovation, margin enhancements, quality improvements, health and wellness, etc.).  Acts as a business partner and sensory specialist for at least one major product category or brand (e.g. meat products/Jimmy Dean) and/or is responsible for leading daily activities (staff training, scheduling, client education, etc.) and methods advancement for 1-2 sensory functions (e.g. discrimination and/or Research Guidance Testing).  Provides direction and guidance based on the Sara Lee Product Testing Guidelines to ensure robustness of research balanced with appropriate use of resources. Add strategic value as a Business Partner in conjunction with ISP, providing cross-functional support to project teams by designing, executing, analyzing, and reporting results of all Sensory test types (shelf life, discrimination, descriptive and consumer guidance testing).  Develops recommendations and next steps based on results and overall project business objectives.  Is sought out as a critical sensory resource and is a driving force at team meetings with staff from Product Development, Marketing, ISP, Packaging, Process Engineering, Procurement, Engineering, Regulatory, Legal and Sales.
Department Leadership: Mentors lower staff  level positions for technical, business and professional development. Serves as a key resource for subordinates to ensure they understand best practices, protocols and sensory procedures.  Designs and executes research (Research-on-Research) to advance internal and external methods and procedures. Works with Director to make recommendations to Senior Management about program process improvements and new methods implementation. Prepares and maintains budgets concerning areas of responsibility.
 Advancement of the Field: Works with more senior sensory staff  to advance the tools, methods, analysis and business applications of  sensory functions. For a sensory functional area, they must design, execute and interpret internal analytical sensory and external consumer  methods development (Research-on Research) in order to implement test methodologies that create a competitive advantage for Sara Lee brands. Integrates best in class sensory methods with the latest advances in statistics and market research.  Ensures that methods development enhances the process flows in the Sara Lee Product Testing Guidelines. Should have respected, active membership in a key external organization (ASTM, IFT, Pangborn, Sensometrics, etc) as appropriate, as well as strong partnerships with recognized industry experts and  key external training and development.  Also needs to be responsible for following one key technical journal or research area of interest to department (e.g. scaling methods), relating back to the department technical opportunities for methods growth.

 Communication and Technology Capabilities: Demonstrates commendable oral (presentation, meetings) and written communication skills.  Solid proficiency in use of Microsoft tools (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint).  Must have solid skills and understanding  of statistical design and analysis and the ability to analyze data in Excel Statistics and SPSS or SAS.  Knowledge of Compusense software desired.  Must know how to use and apply Design of Experiments and Multivariate Analysis techniques.
Application of Food Science and Engineering Knowledge to Sensory Design and Application: Has solid proven knowledge of food systems as it relates to basic food science, food processing, food chemistry and food engineering.  Must have advanced food development understanding in order to ensure appropriateness of design, execution and interpretation of both analytical and consumer sensory testing.  Must be aware of emerging food science trends and issues and anticipate how those will impact project objectives and subsequent sensory and ISP testing.  Must be able to ask R&D questions about food processing/development and how food design will impact the sensory and consumer perception of the prototypes and final product. Must consider these factors into sensory test design parameters.



Job Requirements 

         B.S. in Sensory, Food Science with 10+ years of experience OR M.S., Ph.D. in Sensory, Food Science, or related field with 5-7  years of Sensory experience preferred. 

         Solid knowledge of Statistical design and statistical software a must. 

         Extensive experience in all aspects of analytical and objective sensory is essential. 

         Cross functional training in Market Research is desired.

         This job requires proven project management and communication skills. 

Each and every day, Sara Lee (NYSE: SLE) delights millions of consumers and customers around the world. The company has one of the world's best-loved and leading portfolios with its innovative and trusted food and beverage brands, including Ball Park, Douwe Egberts, Hillshire Farm, Jimmy Dean, Sara Lee and Senseo. Collectively, our brands generate nearly $11 billion in annual net sales. Sara Lee has approximately 33,000 employees in its continuing operations worldwide. Please visit  for the latest news and in-depth information about Sara Lee and its brands.

At Sara Lee, we believe that careers are as unique as individuals.  That's why we offer employment opportunities that give you ownership of your career.  With the resources of a global corporation and direct responsibility to make it happen, you can be confident that you'll always be able to perform your best and be recognized for it.  At Sara Lee, the difference is you.
The Sara Lee compensation program is designed to provide you with comprehensive, flexible benefits that enable you to select those features that best fit your needs. Our benefits include, but are not limited to: medical, prescription drug, dental, vision, life, short and long term disability, retirement plans, and tuition reimbursement. 

 An Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action Employer


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